5 Things I Wish I Would Have Done Differently as a Trainer

Written by Emily M

Hey, fellow fitness lovers!

I’m Emily and I’ve been a personal trainer for over 3 years now. Before becoming a trainer and even now, I’m still learning ways to improve my healthy lifestyle and help others!

I have had a lot of trial and errors with my own training and nutrition, but I’ve learned a lot in my journey.

Hopefully, these tips can help you avoid some mistakes I made along the way!

5 Things I Wish I’d Done Differently

1. I didn’t eat enough protein and overall calories.

A tupperware full of chicken and rice

I wanted to get lean, but restricting my calories and protein too much led me to lose some of my muscle mass.

After realizing this, I decided I needed to increase my calories and protein slowly to help me gain lean muscle mass.

Protein is an essential macronutrient that will help you build and maintain your muscle mass!

2. I relied on cardio too heavily.

A group of people running on a treadmill

I sweat a lot during cardio, so I thought that’s when I burned the most calories.

Then I learned that weight lifting actually burns more calories than cardio, and burns calories even after the workout! I now do mostly weight training and my cardio is quick and efficient.

I love to do HIIT sprints on the treadmill and plyometrics for about 10‐15 minutes.

Try some HIIT cardio after a weight lifting session for an intense but EFFICIENT workout!

3. I didn’t emphasize enough to my clients the importance of proper nutrition.

A healthy looking plate of chicken salad

When I first started as a trainer I would tell my clients that nutrition is important during the first session, but wouldn’t keep checking in on how they’re doing.

They usually wouldn’t be reaching their goals.

Now, I emphasize the importance of nutrition for reaching your fitness goals and continue to check in on them to help them find healthy recipes that they enjoy and that will help them reach their goals!

4. I tried to fit too much “junk food” into my macros.

a plate with a burger and some fries

Counting macros is a great way to live a balanced lifestyle and being able to enjoy your favorite foods while also reaching your fitness goals.

But when my macros are too full of processed foods, I don’t feel my best.

Now, I keep the majority of my macros clean and unprocessed and enjoy processed foods in smaller amounts.

Try eating 80% of your daily intake from whole, unprocessed food and you will feel amazing!

5. I thought the only place to get a great workout was a gym.

yoga mat

When I first started lifting I only felt like I had a good workout when I was lifting heavy in a gym setting.

When I would work out at home I felt like bodyweight exercises didn’t push me enough.

I wasn’t being pushed because I was taking too many rest periods and not incorporating plyometrics into my routines.

Now, when I train at home or on the go with minimal equipment, I write down all the exercises I’m going to do and then perform them in a circuit with minimal rest time. This gets my heart racing and torches some calories!

If you’re working out at home, try to keep your reps high and your rest time small!


Trainer Emily McKeon sitting on a wall in the sunset

I hope you can learn from my mistakes and start making healthy habits for yourself!

Don’t worry if you make some mistakes along the way. We all do!

You will learn from them and you can grow from the experiences! Have a happy and healthy day!

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